A student claims she was ogled and subjected to indecent exposure at a prestigious Yorkshire golf club.
Molly Bryan says she was was left “traumatised” after being “ogled”, sworn at, and subjected to lewd comments. She also claims one man was seen with his genitals “hanging out”.
The 20-year-old said the incident in September last year left her unable to sleep for three days, and at risk of suffering a panic attack if she came within sight of the club.
She said she was called to work at a private function at Hallamshire Golf Club, South Yorkshire, at which "I was sexually harassed by three members".
Bryan said: “That evening, I was ogled at and they asked me inappropriate comments as they would like 'to f*** me' and 'stick their c*** in my ear'.
"I was also subject to indecent exposure by another member as he had his genitals hanging out.”
Hallamshire Golf Club, nestled between Sheffield and the Peak District, boasts “one of best and most challenging” courses in the north and lists BBC presenter Dan Walker as a current member on its website. Walker also presents a virtual tour video on the site.
The university student says she complained to the club and was told the matter would be investigated thoroughly.
However, left disappointed by the sanctions levelled against those responsible which included a ‘12-month behavioural watch’ and letters of apology, she decided to go public with her experience.
One apology letter read: “We are a group of friends whose comments and humour were not intended to cause any offence.
“Please be assured that on my part there was no intent or awareness that my actions that evening had caused you distress."
Another wrote, saying how he had “no excuses” for his actions that evening.
He added: "I am deeply sorry I caused you an offence and made you feel comfortable. My behaviour was unacceptable and I am wholeheartedly ashamed of myself.”
Another member said he was “genuinely sorry” for what happened, saying: "Clearly, as an individual and as part of a wider group of friends, steps needed to be taken to ensure that we all take the learning from this situation and ensure that it does not happen again.”
Bryan dismissed the letters as “a joke”.
She said: “They said this [incident] affected them. How can they say that it affected them when in fact it affected me - on what they said to me and how they treated me.”
Bryan added: "I was traumatised, I didn't sleep for three days and even now whenever I see the golf club I have a panic attack."
She left her job at the club following the incident and her father Phil also resigned from the club in protest at what happened.
A statement issued by the club to Yahoo News UK read: “We take allegations of this nature extremely seriously and are committed to ensuring that the Club is a safe and welcoming environment for both staff and members alike.
Bryan reported the incident to South Yorkshire Police but claims it was not followed up.
The force told Yahoo News UK the investigation was closed due to the "victim not wanting to take any further action”.
Bryan denies this.
She said: "I even said to them that they did nothing to help me. They just said they would ring the Hallamshire and talk to them. Which allegedly they did. I’m very confused how they’ve come to that understanding.”
New club policies, put in place in January 2021, state that the club is committed to “promoting a fair and harmonious environment in which everyone is treated with respect and dignity and in which no individuals feel bullied, threatened, intimidated or harassed.”
It adds: "The aim of this and the equality and diversity policy is to raise awareness about and prevent bullying and harassment at Hallamshire Golf Club."
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